Starting Strength Weekly Report

April 27, 2015

  • The April Under the Bar prize drawing winner is Joe Jaloszynski.
SS Coaches' Updates & Blogs

Under the Bar

doug kim 315 pr Doug Kim hits a PR set of 315 at Horn Strength & Conditioning in Los Angeles. [photo courtesy of Paul Horn]
hieu lifting USAPL meet Hieu benches 99# for her second attempt and pulls 230# for her final lift at the USAPL Equinox Powerlifting meet two weeks ago. [photo courtesy of Emily Socolinsky]
Michigan strength training camp The Michigan Strength Conspiracy continues: Black Iron Training's Chris Kurisko (left) and GreySteel's Dr. Jonathon Sullivan (right) coaching at the April Starting Strength Training Camp in Lansing, Michigan. [photo courtesy of Jonathon Sullivan]
altman lift studio inna Christina Altman learns the basic lifts at Studio Inna in preparation for the Starting Strength Seminar next month in Maryland. [photo courtesy of Inna Koppel]
spinal anatomy lesson Rip goes over spinal anatomy at the Starting Strength Seminar. [photo courtesy of Inna Koppel]
Kurisko coaches Troy on bench Later, at the same Michigan training camp, Troy Thompson benches while Starting Strength Coach Chris Kurisko looks on. [photo courtesy of Chris Kurisko]

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Best of the Week

Building a House

About 8 years ago, I formulated the idea of building a house for my family, and I realized that I was too weak to make that happen, so I undertook the journey of becoming stronger. A google search led me to other systems, which (through my highly-refined BS-detectors) led me to your site, which led me to a 500-lb deadlift and a 205lb press. Stronger than the average meat-head.

Now I'm finally building my house. This is relevant because I could not be doing this if I wasn't "more useful in general", let alone harder to kill. I give a lot of credit for my physical condition, the one that allows me to do this, to Starting Strength.

Because of my developed strength, I am able to carry out sub-maximal tasks all day long without a second thought. I thought this was crap when I first read Rip's thoughts on it, but it WORKS! Those "sub-maximal" tasks would destroy an untrained person and I just sweat my way through them.

Another significant observation: I have been working my ass off for four weeks on this project. I have lost four inches off of my waist measurement in those four weeks. My body-weight has held constant at 265 pounds. My wife says that I feel *hard* when she hugs me. Looking in the mirror, it's hard to believe the physical changes that are happening as a result of hard work. This reinforces my idea that dieting is BS, and that the only solution to the modern obesity epidemic is hard, sustained, daily physical work. I. Am. Loving. This!

Best of the Forum

Starting Strength and triathalon training

I've been reading this forum all weekend, and haven't run across this on here (or anywhere else that I can see online). I'm starting Starting Strength as a fatass (34, 225 lbs, 35% BF) who also does triathlons (see where all cardio gets you?), all based off the quote of "a stronger athlete is a better athlete."

I'm sure there will be some sarcasm of "Why the hell would you put your body through the tri?", which I fully understand, but I enjoy it. The main goal is to have better swim/bike/run times. Lifting goals are to get to 2x BW for squat and DL, bench 1.5x BW, and press BW.

That said, here's the Q:

At what point will my body and the CNS see that lifting M/W/F on a linear progression and running/swimming on T/R/S is too much, and how will it let me know?

Andy Baker

Don't structure your workouts like that. I train a fairly successful tri-athlete and started her off on the SS program about a year ago. She ran or biked every day during the week (often both) and swam on weekends ( I had nothing to do with her tri-training).

Twice a week training was more productive than three times per week. Even with that...expect some bad days, especially on the squat and you won't get workout to workout progression like a normal lifter. Eke out gains where you can but don't force the issue if it ain't there, and some days it won't be.

Training you people tests my patience.


Fair enough. How can I combine the two, taking into consideration that tri season would start around July 1 and run through Sept. 15? Also noting that I'm already a fat ass who can likely change some body comp.

Mark Rippetoe

You can't combine the two and do either well. Sorry.


What you do is figure out how long it will take you to get into shape for your July 1st start of season. For the sake of argument, Let's say it's six months - meaning you need to start on January 1st. That would mean you have three months (Oct, Nov, Dec) for strength training. For those three months, just do SS - nothing else. In my experience, SS all by itself is enough to maintain your cardiovascular capacity at a reasonable level. You'll be out of shape of course, but it won't be like starting from square one. Your train up after Jan 1 will go better as well since you'll be stronger. You could also take advantage of that three month period to clean up your diet - don't eat less, but better, mainly meat and vegetables.


Maybe you could think about doing "seasonal" training like football players do. Once your tri-season is done, you could concentrate SS for a few months. Then when you go back to tri next season you will be doing so from a stronger base ...

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